A Broughty Ferry man has hit out after a bogus workman conned his 87-year-old mother out of £400.
Sugra Bibi Bhatti paid “handyman” Mark Steele £400 to build a cupboard in her bedroom but Steele disappeared with the money before starting the work.
He then spent three months making excuses as to why he could not do the work, which he originally said would take just three days.
Mr Steele eventually agreed to repay the money to Mrs Bibi but never made good on his promises.
His litany of excuses for not doing the work included claims doors for the cupboard had not arrived, that he had to visit his mother in hospital, and having to take his son back to his RAF base.
After agreeing to pay back the money in July, he then continued to stall and blamed his father for failing to make a bank transfer properly.
Mrs Bhatti’s son, Mohammed Bhatti, said: “He was doing some work in a café in Broughty Ferry and we asked him if he could do some jobs for us.
“He did some wallpapering and that was fine but then my mother paid him £400 to build a cupboard in her room. He got £400 in advance and was to get another £200 after the work was done.”
Mr Bhatti added: “Mum would strongly advise people watch out for handymen like him.
“These kinds of heartless people have no clue what politeness stands for and should be given strict punishments.
“Similar cases like this have been on the rise where victims are easy targets. There needs to be awareness so hard-saved money is stopped from going into the hands of so-called handymen.”
Dundee City Council recommends that people use their Trusted Trader scheme to avoid getting conned by bogus workmen.
It lists tradesmen who have a reputation for good practice nad allows their customers to post reviews of their work online.
It can be viewed at www.trustedtrader.info
Mr Bhatti said he has reported Mr Steele to the police.
The Courier approached Mr Steele for comment but received no response.